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Re: A story! A story!

I too cannot resist the pleas of either Countess Ianthe or Lady Deirdre, as 
they sit in their quiet corner of the Merry Rose at Cheapside, so herewith
offer something of my own (although not recent) making, after a fashion 
taught by Malkin Grey, being somewhat after the form of the ancient works 
of England.
Sea Wars A.S. xxiii
(Keilyn FitzWarin,1990)

Departing the dreary, dark-shrouded Northland
South to the sea-land, sailing away
Battle bound brothers, boldly faring
Follow the floodwater's fickle sea-road
Swiftly sailing, seeking battle
Northmen nightfaring, never fearing
Famed fighters, full of might
Merry in meadhall, now march southward

Mail-clad man, marauding giant
Dark-maned demon, descended from Danes
Bearing bright sword and blue-painted war-shield
Beer-drinking bridge-leader, brave son of Ingolf.
Cross-bearing comrade, clever in speech,
Golden-haired Gaul-man, great in strength
Willing with women, warlike in bearing
Eager for eagle-feast, angry in battle.

Kings command, comrades are summoned
answering aid-call, armies assemble
Behold the war band, boldly goes forth
Braid-trees bravely, brilliant among them
Helms and hauberks are hot and heavy
Tales are told, travelling southward
Knowing that not all North will return
Many will mourn missing comrades

Bright battle-maiden, boon companion
Stands and stares into starry darkness
Waiting weary for word from warland
News, nightborne, of narrow escapes
Tales of trouble, tearfully heard
Dreading the death of dear hearth-companions
Promises prayers for prompt return
of gold-giving lords, gore-smeared but whole.

Ready to rend, ravens are circling
Witchsteeds will feed on war's remains
Lines are laid out, luck is wished
Few are fighting many foes
But might is better and best of champions
Than thrice one hundred weakling thralls
Sea-bound spearmen smite the shieldwall
War-wall is riven, southmen are weeping

Weary with wains, laden with war-prize
Bloody banners are homeward borne
Some will stay to lie with sea-folk
Others with ale, oaths will take
To return reaving, rings to gain
Gold and glory gotten by battle
But now at night, from noble skalds
We hear of heroes, homeward faring.

(Never let it be said that a good skald turned down a pint of ale!!)

Beth Morris